7 Tips On Keeping Your Child Safe Online

securly-7-tips-on-keeping-your-child-safe-online

Children learn about stranger danger from a very young age. We remind them about the importance of their safety whenever they step out of the home. Those same cautions should be applied to the cyber world.

Children are beginning to use the internet at younger ages. They have access to oodles of information at their fingertips and the ability to network instantly across distances. But there are some real risks and safety concerns when it comes to the world wide web.

Here are 7 ways you can help keep your child safe online:

1. Open a Discussion

Provide your child with information rather than a list of don’ts. Talk about the risks involved with social media. Try not to be confrontational and ask open-ended questions. Let your child know that they can come to you if they come across disturbing content and if they are being bullied.

2. Talk About Digital Citizenship

In order to practice good digital citizenship, your child must understand that the internet is public and that their online activity can follow them and can impact their future. Discuss the consequences negative online behavior can have not only on your child but others as well. College Admissions Officials may look at online profiles. What kind of information does your child want them to find?

3. Take Control Of Your Privacy

Offer to review profile settings of social media accounts together and ensure they are set to private. This can stop unwanted strangers from contacting your children and viewing their posts. Empower your children to make decisions that will protect their privacy.

4. Educate Yourself

To ensure your children are safe online, educate yourself about existing dangers. Try to stay as up-to-date as possible with what is trending and popular among teens. You can refer to our recent blog post series (Popular Teen Apps Parents Need To Know) that details the safety risks of popular teen apps.

5. Set Rules

Work as a family to create ground rules for your home in regards to screen time and phone usage. Keep computers in a central location so you can easily monitor your child’s activity and set time limits. Limit phone and tablet usage in bed at night.

6. Be An Example

Lead by example by following the ground rules that you yourself set for the home. That includes not using your phone in bed and during the time you spend with your children. Involve your children when posting their pictures and respect their privacy when they ask you to not share something.

7. Filter The Internet

Filtering devices are tools that help you block and filter websites and social media. Securly’s Plug n’ Play Hub goes one step further, and lets you create safe Wi-fi at home for your kids. The Hub connects to your home Wi-fi router to ensure that search engine results and YouTube are in safe mode. Parents can manage restrictions and time limits through an app without affecting their own Wi-fi experience.

Popular Teen Apps Parents Need To Know (Part 2)

Part 1 explored safety concerns and hidden dangers of social apps popular with teens today. But the more we researched, the more risky apps and websites we found. So today we are bringing you Part 2, an investigation into more popular teen apps.   

popular-teen-apps-parents-need-to-know-part2

Continue reading

Popular Teen Apps Parents Need To Know (Part 1)

On average, teens spend about 9 hours a day using media. With summer break, that number may increase. The apps most popular among teens and tweens may seem harmless; however, there are real safety concerns that parents need to be aware of:

popular-teen-apps-parents-need-to-be-aware-of-v2

Continue reading

Securly 24: Saving Lives One Call At A Time

Since 2015, Auditor and Filter have used AI-based technology to flag messages of grief and bullying in emails, social media posts, and Internet searches. When a concerning message is detected, automated email alerts are sent to the IT admin in that district. But we knew we could do one better. So last September, we released securly:// 24 to the world.

Welcome to our 24 Student Safety Operations. This combines our Auditor and Filter sentiment analysis algorithm with a team of Student Safety Analysts who conduct risk analysis in real time on alerts flagged for suicide, depression, self-harm, and bullying. If the alert indicates imminent danger for the student, our analysts notify designated emergency contacts from the school immediately.

Even better? Our analysts are able to review the student’s previous alerts and search activity to form a more complete picture of the situation. This kind of insight means that we can help a suicidal student who vaguely emailed a friend they were in pain, but searched “how to kill yourself” on Google 5 minutes later.

“Securly has unique insight to student’s online activities and our analysts are trained to use this information to identify students experiencing real threats to their safety,” says Kathy Boehle, Director of Securly’s 24 Student Safety Operations. “Students aren’t always straightforward when communicating via email. Often Securly’s search data can clarify which students are a little sad, and which students are desperate and need immediate help.”

After a few short months, 34 lives have been saved. Here are just a few of those stories:

How To Help Your Child Through The Stress Of Exams

Summer is just around the corner and you may have already begun planning family vacations and outings. But before they have fun, your kids have to take a little something called final exams [insert scary Halloween-like sounds here].

exam-stress-blog-illustration-v4

Continue reading

Securly Shares 5 Years of Student Safety Evolution

In 2013, Securly had its humble beginnings as a web filter company with the release of our flagship filter product. Student safety has always been our mission, and something we have prioritized when building and releasing new products and services for the K-12 market. 5 years of releases and launches later, we are not just a web filter company. We are The student safety company. Presenting…5 Years with Securly!

SecurlyTimeline

5 Ways to Promote Mental Health Awareness at School

It’s Mental Health Month, and today is National Children’s Mental Health Awareness Day. 11.01% of 12-17 year olds reported suffering from at least one major depressive episode in 2017, and suicide is the third leading cause of death for children aged 10-14.

securly-national-depression-awareness-month-v3.jpg

Continue reading

Social Media Challenges: What Adults Need To Know

Teens are suffering second-degree burns from purposefully rubbing salt and ice on their skin. Laundry detergent pods are being swallowed resulting in hospitalizations. Recently, a student at a New Jersey High School died after playing something called the Choking Challenge.

securly-online-challenges-V3-01

The recent rise of social media challenges is putting teens at risk of serious physical harm. So why are these internet challenges so appealing? Why would teens purposely inflict harm on themselves for fun?

Continue reading

What to Expect from Securly in 2018

classroom, securly, parents, student safety, online

2017 was a year of immense growth for us. Securly now has 70+ employees across California, North Carolina, and India. Our Charlotte and India offices continue to expand, and we moved our HQ in Silicon Valley to a new office 3x the size of our old space.

Our main goal for 2017 was to innovate, innovate, and innovate. And as always, with the intention to secure ubiquitous child safety both at school and at home. In our path to achieving this goal, we pledge to create affordable, innovative products – so that schools and parents never have to compromise on student safety. We accomplished a lot this past year, and are excited to share our new products with you soon. 2018 here we come!

COMING SOON

Classroom

With this free feature, we let teachers become the IT admins of their own classroom. They can track assignments and whitelist/blacklist sites. Classroom works in conjunction with Google Classroom, helping teachers keep students on track to maximize the benefits of EdTech. Sign up for our priority list here.

24

We’re offering a 24/7 crisis support team because cyberbullying, depression, and self-harm are not bound by a 9-5 schedule. 24 automatically observes a student’s activity on the web, social media, and Youtube. When activity is flagged, a trained staff member will review the context in which it was used and the user’s history for insight into the bigger picture. Able to recognize the nuances of language and critically analyze a user’s history, a human can make determinations that technology may overlook. If flagged activities are cause for alarm, a 24 staff member will alert a counselor in real-time via text or, if necessary, a phone call.

Plug n’ Play

Parents can design an at-home Internet experience that is personalized for their children. Just connect the plug n’ play hub to your wifi router and rest assured your kids are browsing safely.  Parents can change the filter settings, block any inappropriate sites, set time limits, and receive optional e-mail reports and notifications. Parent wifi is not affected.

And in case you missed it, here’s a list of other features that make Securly the best web filter:

 

For more information about new product features, subscribe to our newsletter:


Classroom by Securly – helping teachers manage EdTech for free.

Screen Shot 2017-11-02 at 9.25.25 AM

Background

EdTech is booming. The industry has accumulated $887M in funding in the first half of this year already. Many schools continue to adopt a 1:1 environment, a program that offer students autonomy and access; yet many teachers and parents feel they lack the required structure to optimize success. Thus, the need for classroom management tools is becoming imperative. These tools allow teachers to know track student progress and productivity, allowing classroom interaction to continue into the virtual world.

However, classroom management assistance became commodified as soon as its need was realized. With all the costs schools incur, additional classroom tools tend to be a lower priority than online safety and security features which are required by law.

 

Our Solution

To ensure that schools never have to compromise, we are planning to release a free, classroom management tool at the start of 2018. Called Classroom by Securly, it will work in conjunction with Google Classroom, and allows teachers the ability to be the IT admins of their own classrooms. This will provide educators the ability to whitelist websites that are relevant to their class and block all others. Ultimately, this tool will help teachers keep students on track to maximize the benefits of EdTech.

“We want teachers to be able to walk into their classroom and know that kids can only access whitelisted content,” says Bharath Madhusudan, CTO and co-founder of Securly. “Giving teachers control over their classroom means kids have to focus on math, history, English, whatever. They can’t distract themselves, even if they want to.”

 

The first to receive Classroom by Securly will be those educators on a priority list. To sign up for the priority list, click here.